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D. The Facts About Epilepsy

Narrator: This is Science Today. About 25 million Americans experience at least one seizure in their lifetime. Many of these people will have epilepsy, which is characterized by repeated, unprovoked brain seizures. According to Dr. Evelyn Tecoma, of The Epilepsy Center at the University of California, San Diego, these seizures can occur at any age.

Tecoma: From infancy to old age and virtually every patient is unique so that a person with epilepsy who begins at age fifteen might have a completely different syndrome

Narrator: And a different history and prognosis than someone who begins at age three months or someone who begins at age eighty. There are also different types of seizures. Some patients with epilepsy have seizures which involve a lot of the brain at the onset.

Tecoma: Other patients have partial onset seizures - instead of the whole brain getting in on the act, just a small portion of the brain is sort of the initiator or the pilot light that gets the rest of it going.

Narrator: Because of this, an accurate diagnosis of seizure type is crucial in determining the best treatment options. For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.